Nights of music and sound at Cork Midsummer Festival

Check out these offerings at Cork Midsummer Festival, which runs from June 14 to 27
Nights of music and sound at Cork Midsummer Festival

Places of Comfort features Cork artist Toby Kaar. Pic: Izabela Szczutkowska

Abbey Blake

Streaming; June 17 (premiering 3pm/8pm) to June 19

One of an emerging generation of creative polymaths to come from Cork’s working-class northside, Abbey Blake has graced these pages before in her role as guitarist in noisemakers Pretty Happy, but has also blazed a trail in film, spoken word and community activism. This showcase looks at a performance from the band, a spoken-word performance, and the Cork-made youth drama series ‘Jag’, which she co-wrote/directed with brother and bandmate Arann Blake.

Abbey Blake. Picture Shane J Horan
Abbey Blake. Picture Shane J Horan


Elizabeth Fort, Barrack Street; June 18 & 19 at 4pm, 6pm and 8pm

Film artist Oonagh Kearney and composer Ellen King invite you to re-imagine the Port of Cork via a silent disco on a socially-distanced spot, with a shifting composition of sound, spoken word, beats and music, inspired by Cork-born opera singer Kate ‘Birdie’ Conway’s departure from, and return to, her home city.

Bangers and Crash

Elizabeth Fort, Barrack Street; June 20-22, 6pm (20 - 22 June), 8pm (21 & 22 June)

Three new percussion works by Cork composers Tom Lane, Alex Petcu and Amanda Feery have been written especially for this event, which sees the Bangers and Crash Percussion Ensemble surrounding the (socially-distanced) audience and blasting them with thundering drums.

Places of Comfort

Streaming; June 23-25, premiering 8pm nightly

An audiovisual project curated by Leagues O’Toole (No Disco, Foggy Notions) that sees three artists making music in response to the restrictions and growing familiarity of place that happened over the course of lockdown. Galway singer-songwriter Maija Sofia, in residence at Cobh’s Sirius Arts Centre over lockdown, Cork-based singer and musician Elaine Howley, and Cork electronic artist Toby Kaar feature.

Galway singer-songwriter Maija Sofia
Galway singer-songwriter Maija Sofia

Elaine Howley. Pic: Cathal MacGabhann
Elaine Howley. Pic: Cathal MacGabhann

Throwing Shapes

Streaming; June 25 (premiering 6pm) to June 27

A documentary/performance film made at the Kabin studio in Knockaheeny, Throwing Shapes follows seven young artists as they find ways to express themselves through the medium of hip-hop. Performing their original tunes, the artists have taken their creativity in this project from songwriting, to its first version as a play, to a film directed by Rosie Barrett and shot by Gemma Dunleavy/Jape collaborator Albert Hooi.

Throwing Shapes. Pic: Claire Keogh
Throwing Shapes. Pic: Claire Keogh

A Midsummer Celebration

Streaming; now until June 27

A near who’s-who of hip-hop in Cork and surrounding areas curated by the recipient of the 2020 Midsummer Commission, Tobi Omoteso, taking in members of Cork’s Cuttin’ Heads Collective, Limerick’s Limrockers B-Boy Crew, and this parish’s Stevie G, among others. A celebration of hip-hop music, dance and street art filmed at Elizabeth Fort, to accompany a sold-out live event.

All streaming events are happening at the festival’s YouTube page:

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